Dallas County added 521 new cases of COVID-19 Monday, the lowest number of new cases in nearly a month, along with seven more deaths attributed to the virus.
According to a statement by Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins, the new numbers reported Monday are accurate and do not reflect a lack of reporting by any group.
"While this is good news, it's too early to call it a trend," Jenkins said. "We are also reporting seven additional deaths today, ranging in ages from a man in his 40s to a man in his 80s."
Of the cases reported Monday, the county said 521 were confirmed cases and 20 were probable (antigen test) cases, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the county from March to 119,483 and the number of probable (antigen test) cases to 11,244.
County officials said Monday there have been 1,191 confirmed deaths in the county attributed to the virus and another 27 probable deaths. In the summer, Dallas County Health and Human Services Director Dr. Philip Huang said COVID-19 is the third leading cause of death in the county behind diseases of the heart and cancers.
The county added that the provisional 7-day average for new confirmed and probable cases by date of a test collection for CDC week 46 has increased to 1,321, which is a rate of 50.1 daily new cases per 100,000 residents. During the same week, a provisional total of 1,224 confirmed and probable cases were diagnosed in school children between the ages of 5 and 17 -- a three-fold increase from five weeks earlier.
Judge Jenkins has cautioned for most of the month that the number of new COVID-19 cases could approach 2,000 per day by Thanksgiving if steps to mitigate the spread of the virus aren't taken -- the county has reported 8,766 new cases in the last seven days including a record 2,183 cases on Saturday followed by another 1,862 on Sunday.
"We recognize that this Thanksgiving will be different from Thanksgiving in the past as doctors and I hope you will spend it with the smallest amount of people possible, ideally just the people that you live with," Jenkins said on Twitter Monday.
Jenkins suggests forgoing Black Friday shopping in person, using curbside pickup or contactless options for restaurant, retail and grocery shopping needs.
"COVID will not be with us forever and next Thanksgiving will look like Thanksgiving in the past, but the actions we take now could determine whether we have a full complement of the people that we are thankful for in our upcoming celebrations," Jenkins said. "So please, do all that you can to follow the doctors’ advice and stay safe this holiday season."